Thomas Henry Huxley
Thomas Henry Huxley
by John Collier
oil on canvas, 1883
50 in. x 40 in. (1270 mm x 1016 mm)
Given by the sitter's son, Henry Huxley, 1943
Sitterback to top
- Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895), Biologist and science educationist. Sitter in 48 portraits.
Artistback to top
- John Collier (1850-1934), Portrait painter and writer on art. Artist associated with 22 portraits, Sitter in 7 portraits.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Smartify image discovery app
- Cooper, John, Great Britons: The Great Debate, 2002, p. 117 Read entry
Darwin was inhibited about promoting his ideas: he feared controversy would damage his social status, and he was a poor debater. He provided the intellectual ammunition and background support to expert scientific polemicists such as Joseph Hooker and, above all, Thomas Huxley who took the fight for natural selection into the lecture halls and learned societies, and into print. Huxley's ire was often directed at the powerful anti-Darwinian Richard Owen, hating his 'metaphorical mystifications' masquerading as science. Whenever possible Owen pulled rank over the younger Huxley, once assuming the title 'Professor' to give a series of lextures in Huxley's own School of Mines, thereby undermining his authority.
- Hart-Davis, Adam, Chain Reactions, 2000, p. 131
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 324
- Simon, Robin, The portrait in Britain and America : with a biographical dictionary of portrait painters, 1680-1914, 1987, p. 28 number 25
Events of 1883back to top
Current affairsFollowing the Secret Ballot Act (1872), the Corrupt and Illegal Practices Act was a further measure introduced by Gladstone's government with the intention of limiting bribery and intimidation in elections. Candidates' expenses were published, and a strict limit set on expenses, and it also enabled poorer candidates to stand for parliament.
Art and scienceThe Royal College of Music founded in London, with the British musicologist George Grove as its first director.
Monet moves to Giverny, a village along the Seine, where he lives until his death in 1926. Renting a farmhouse he later buys, Monet designs a pond, redesigns the garden, and begins to paint some of his most recognisable images of water lilies, flower beds and the Japanese footbridge.
InternationalThe Brooklyn Bridge opens in New York, connecting the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn, stretching 1825 metres over the East River. One of the oldest suspension bridges in America, it was the largest in the world upon completion. Designed by the John Augustus Roebling's engineering firm, the bridge is built from limestone, granite and Rosendale natural cement, in gothic style.
Listen to a series of podcasts exploring the lives of pioneering women, past and present.
William Eggleston was closely associated with the alternative music scene in Memphis. Revisit our 2016 exhibition and listen to a special playlist.
Links to audio and transcripts of interviews with artists, sitters and historic recordings.
Tell us more
Framed & unframed prints
Choose your favourite portrait from our Collection as a framed or unframed print for your home.